Amy Stacey Curtis' 8th solo-biennial exhibit of interactive installation, MATTER (October 4-24, 2014), was 9 participatory works installed throughout 2 floors (24,000 s.f.) of Parsonsfield, Maine's Robinson Mill. Each of MATTER's installations were accompanied by instructions, the audience challenged to perpetuate and complete Curtis' concepts in specific ways. Photos: Luc Demers, Amy Stacey Curtis
scroll down to view
shift I, 9 pedestals, miscellaneous, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Repeated from Curtis' 3rd solo biennial CHANGE (2004), invitation instructions: "Bring small personal possession with which you can part forever." At opening Curtis placed upon each of nine pedestals a personal possession. Participants asked to choose object upon one pedestal, replace object with object brought, and to take home object removed. Hundreds of objects were given and taken. (each pedestal: 48"x12"x12")
shift III, 9 pedestals, non-drying clay, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Participants asked to change what started as nine, identical, white cubes in identical ways. Whatever change or changes they made to first cube, small or large, they were asked to make to other eight. (each pedestal: 36"x12"x12"; each cube at start of exhibit: 9"x9"x9")
meniscus, 9 glass containers, water, metal, plastic, droppers, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Repeated from Curtis' 1st solo biennial EXPERIENCE (2000), participants maintained nine menisci (upper curvature of water) for duration of exhibit, adding water to installation when necessary. (each container: 14"x4")
flux V, 562,437 sand granules, 720 glass vials, pedestal, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
At start of exhibit, first vial contained 562,437 grains of sand. Curtis had counted grains over course of 15 months, removing 2 granules to make total multiple of 9. Participants asked to carefully pour all grains of sand from current vial into next, sand traveling from front vial to back vial. Once sand reached last vial or exhibit ended (whichever comes first), installation complete, and Curtis would eventually recount sand documenting how much matter made it to end of installation. (pedestal: 48"x24"x1,440"; each vial: 3.75"x1")
succession IV, 99 glass containers, 18 eye-dropper bottles, water, ink, ledger, ledger pedestal, pencil, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Curtis set out to instruct each of 550 participants to add 9 drops of black ink to 99 cylindrical glass containers of water. If all participants added ink as instructed, water from 1st container to 99th container would gradually darken from clear to black by precise amounts. Each participant initialed line of instruction in ledger, which indicated how many drops of ink to add to which container(s) (excerpt):
"________ Participant #1: Add 1 drop of ink to the 1st container and 2 drops to the 2nd and 3 drops to the 3rd and 3 drops to the 4th.
________ Participant #2: Add 1 drop of ink to the 4th container and 5 drops to the 5th and 3 drops to the 6th.
________ Participant #3: Add 3 drops of ink to the 6th container and 6 drops to the 7th.
________ Participant #4: Add 1 drop of ink to the 7th container and 8 drops to the 8th.
________ Participant #5: Add 9 drops of ink to the 9th container.
________ Participant #6: Add 9 drops of ink to the 10th container.
________ Participant #7: Add 1 drop of ink to the 10th container and 8 drops to the 11th.
________ Participant #8: Add 3 drops of ink to the 11th container and 6 drops to the 12th.
________ Participant #9: Add 6 drops of ink to the 12th container and 3 drops to the 13th."
(pedestal: 12"x24"x1,440"; each container: 24"x10"x10"; ledger: 9"x9"x.75")
aggregate, dirt, up to 999 editioned tins, ledger, ledger pedestal, pencil, platform, tools, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Curtis set out to have 999 participants each add 3 cups of dirt/soil/earth from home to this furrow, its capacity equal to 999 3-cup quantities. Once 999 participants added dirt, or once exhibit ended (whichever came first), installation complete. Participants documented contributions in ledger while dirt mixed by artist and assistants.
Aggregate dirt would be divided into ~3-cup units--number of units equal to number of participants; amount of dirt in each unit equal, and determined by overall accuracy of participants. Each unit sealed in labelled, editioned tin to be picked up (at MEMORY, 2016) or eventually shipped/delivered. (platform: 14"x170"x1,752"; ledger: 9"x9"x2.5")
sort V, 2,700 wood cubes, shelves, acrylic, ink, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
At start of exhibit, all 2,700 cubes on one side of wall, placed in random order. Participants chose 3 cubes at random from this side, and placed them in order on other side of wall, 1 through 2,700. Once all cubes sorted, or exhibit ended (which ever came first), installation complete. (wall: 96"x48"x384"; each cube: 1.5"x1.5"x1.5")
inversion II, 1,520 spruce posts, acrylic, oil paint, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Repeated from Curtis' 7th solo biennial SPACE (2012), Curtis installed posts in convex form. Using floor chart provided, participants transferred wood, transforming installation into concave form. Once concave form generated, installation was complete. (form at start of exhibit: 47.5"x156"x156"; form at end of exhibit: 47.5"x156"x156")
labyrinth VII, 9 medium-density board squares, acrylic, audience, 10.4.14-10.24.14
Instructions: "Step into first square. Quietly stand/pause in first square, facing forward (toward rest of squares). If participant already in first square, regardless of how long, without speaking gently tap participant on shoulder. When participant moves to next square, quietly stand/pause in first square, facing forward. If someone taps you on shoulder, without speaking immediately move to quietly stand/pause in next square. If no one taps you on shoulder, quietly stand/pause in first square for as long as you wish." (1"x27"x1,560"; each square: 1"x27"x27")